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Buick to launch its next generation BAS hybrid system

It's no doubt impressive when today's compact sedans -- which are loaded down with hundreds of pounds of safety gear and chassis reinforcements not found on vehicles from decades past -- top the 40 mpg mark. However, it's even more impressive when midsize sedans approach that mark as well.

You know about the compact 2011 Chevrolet Cruze and 2011 Hyundai Elantra which can hit 40+ mpg on the highway. Hyundai's 2011 Sonata midsize sedan can achieve 35 mpg on the highway in its base configuration. GM is now flaunting its 2012 LaCrosse which will come standard with eAssist technology (which will provide up to 37 mpg on the highway) and will be priced at roughly $30,000.

“It’s a very integrated powertrain system, with no compromises in driving performance, shift quality or ride and handling,” said Daryl Wilson, LaCrosse lead development engineer. “We believe this combination points to the future of vehicles powered primarily by an internal combustion engine.”

The LaCrosse will be powered by a traditional 2.4-liter direct injection four-cylinder engine which generates 180 hp. The engine is mated to a 6-speed automatic transmission. However, GM also includes its next generation "mild hybrid" system which it calls eAssist. On the LaCrosse, the eAssist electric motor provides an additional 15 hp and 79 pound-feet of torque during acceleration. Other features to improve fuel economy include an engine start/stop function and regenerative braking.

A 115V lithium-ion battery mounted in the trunk powers the electric motor, but it encroaches on cargo-hauling capabilities. Maximum cargo capacity drops from an already lackluster 13.3 cu ft to just 10.9 cu ft.

However, the benefits in fuel economy are huge. EPA ratings jump from 19/30 mpg (city/highway) to an impressive 25/37 mpg. The city rating falls short of Lincoln's MKZ Hybrid which pulls in an impressive 41 mpg, but that vehicle is priced higher at $35,180.

“The eAssist system is more than just the next-generation BAS system. The ability to integrate regenerative braking with the latest lithium-ion battery technology creates a system that delivers significant fuel-efficiency gains that customers will enjoy,” said Steve Poulos, global chief engineer of the eAssist system. “Being able to provide electric boost to the powertrain system during heavy acceleration and grade driving enables the LaCrosse transmission to operate more efficiently, while the added functionality of engine start-stop and fuel shut-off during deceleration provides added fuel savings.” 

Official pricing and availability of the Buick LaCrosse with eAssist should be available closer to its launch later next year.

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RE: But it's a GM....
By room200 on 11/16/2010 7:28:07 PM , Rating: 2
And guys like you play the same class warfare games. I'm sorry there are people out there who get rich and you don't, even though they don't "deserve" it. But what's your point?

Actually, I live quite well, and I'm not a union member (thank you very much). I have no need to be "rich".

Don't you feel even a little embarrassed that you are THIS emotional about what someone else is making? How is it your business? And how would YOU feel if some CEO commented on your salary?

People comment on my salary all the time.

Enjoy living in your fantasy world where you can remove the incentive for doing something, and yet it still gets done.

You continue to walk around with this total me, me, me, selfish attitude. Unlike you, I pay my taxes and I'm happy to do so. You don't catch me whining like a little girl about it. I realize that this is a country that i love and I happily work to help my fellow American. Your posts are proof positive that greed and selfishness have taken over.

RE: But it's a GM....
By Reclaimer77 on 11/16/2010 9:20:13 PM , Rating: 2
You're too pretentious and judgmental to even discuss this with. What are you shoveling pal? Unless you're a social worker or a missionary or something, don't hand me this "working for others crap".

I've often found the people crying wolf about "greed", are usually those who are the most greedy.

Your posts are proof positive that greed and selfishness have taken over.

Lol how?? Because I'm defending another mans right to earn a living, the best living he can achieve? Something is wrong with that now?

You're scum, you know that? Anyone who thinks it's their place to hold another man down has bad Karma coming to him.

"My sex life is pretty good" -- Steve Jobs' random musings during the 2010 D8 conference
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